Five ways to drive sales by increasing social media engagement

Your small business is probably on Facebook, Instagram or some other social media platform. But are you actually engaging customers, driving leads and increasing your bottom line?

Since social media can impact your business in a lot of positive ways, we've put together five simple ways our customers are boosting engagement beyond the basics.

#1: Be a Giver. Coupons and promotions are important social media marketing tools, but they shouldn’t make up your entire feed. Give content, give value, give advice. Inspire your customers by not constantly selling at them.

1929 Studios, a swing dance studio located in Melbourne, Australia, is killing it on Twitter. They link followers to info on great jazz music, local events and fascinating articles like “How Dancing Changes the Brain.” 1929 Studio’s enthusiasm for their industry makes for meaningful posts and shines a bright light on their brand.

#2: Go Behind the Scenes. “People don’t buy what you do, they buy how you do it,” writes consultant-to-the-big-brands Simon Sinek. Give your community a peek at something no one else can see— a compelling story, a sneak preview into something you’re working on or some insider tips and tricks.

La Vita Bella Coffeehouse is a friendly, everybody-knows-your-name kind of coffee shop that is a salve to all the Starbucks of the world. You don’t have to actually visit their Longmont, Colorado, location to understand what they’re all about though. Their Facebook page is full employee profiles, customer anecdotes and updates about their growth.

#3: Get Shooting. Videos are huge on social media— on Facebook the average video post is seen twice as often as a regular post. And now that you can shoot high-quality, high-def video from your phone, you should provide your customers with tutorials, behind the scenes peeks, previews of new products or services— anything that’s share-worthy.

Little Ondine produces and sells on-trend nail polish that’s zero scent, zero hassle and has zero need for harsh chemical removal. They use their Facebook video posts to show fans what makes them different and how to use the unique properties of their product.

#4: Upgrade Your Social Media Links. It’s essential to have social media share buttons on your website, but why not take it a step further? There are plenty of new widgets and tools you can add to your site that will automate feeds to your site. If you have an active feed with plenty of rich imagery, this is an easy hack that can increase page and post views.

Pupjoy is a Chicago-based online specialty store for dogs and the people that love them. Because they don’t have a brick and mortar location, Pupjoy has no choice but to build relationships with customers online and they’re doing a great job. Their Instagram preview is full of so many adorable pups that it’s virtually impossible not to click through.

#5: Be Social. This one seems like a no-brainer, but too many businesses treat social media as a one-way communication channel. Reach out to those people who like your posts or make comments and find out what makes them tick. Don’t you greet strangers with open arms everyday in real life? You should be doing it online too.

Banana Box Market is a mecca for bargain-hunters who want to stretch their dollars without compromising healthy living. Take a look at their Facebook feed and you’ll see that they are quick to respond to their customers’ comments and questions— almost every single post has generated a positive interaction.